Well-known Foodbank organisation: Allen/Field not welcome on ‘austerity tour’

This week Tory MP Heidi Allan and formerly-Labour MP Frank Field announced they were embarking on a tour of the UK to ‘blow the lid off’ austerity.

It’s hard to imagine a clearer way of saying “we’re out of touch”, except maybe wearing sandwich boards saying “we’re out of touch” – millions of people in this country live the daily reality of austerity and its horrendous consequences and millions of more know about those consequences and support Labour as a result.

Ms Allen was reportedly often on the brink of tears as she visited Foodbanks in London and Leicester according to the Guardian, saying she had ‘absolutely had enough‘ – yet her voting record shows she has voted at least sixteen times for measures to cut benefits, with an inevitably huge impact on the most vulnerable.

This combination of a sudden show of concern and a long history of creating the problem did not impress the Fans Supporting Foodbanks group (FSF), which issued a strongly-worded warning on Twitter that it would not be enabling Field or Allen – or ‘providing [them] with any photo opportunities‘:

FSF is a Liverpool-based fans’ initiative, but has linked up with fan groups around the country for similar efforts to support the most vulnerable.

SKWAWKBOX comment:

The SKWAWKBOX fully endorses FSF’s stance and encourages all similar groups and all foodbanks to do the same, in order to raise awareness of the issues by making the story about the rejection of the MPs’ advances rather than by enabling their cosmetic exercise.

Heidi Allen says she wants to ‘blow the lid off’ poverty so ‘her lot’ will listen – but UN Special Rapporteur Philip Alston already did a far better job last autumn and was attacked by the government for doing so.

If you’re asked to accept a visit from the pair, send details of your polite rejection to the SKWAWKBOX.

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  1. Namaste Skwawkbox,

    Better still, why don’t they just stay put in their grubby constituency offices, donate the cost of said ‘austerity tour’ to FSF (plus a personal contribution from their own pocket), and instead publically berate the policies of their own party using all the media channels available. Nothing less (other than a Labour government) will suffice to convince the vast majority of the UK public that they or ‘their lot’ have ever intended to serve anyone other than their own money-grabbing ilk.



  2. The whole idea of paying UC monthly and giving the whole amount to claimants was designed to force them off benefits and into any work available within 6 weeks. Field is well aware of this and is in full agreement with “nudge” theory. They thought that people with complex social and mental health issues would quickly find jobs rather than risk facing eviction from landlords who won’t wait 6 weeks+ for the rent, or they didn’t think at all, or they think all benefit claimants are feckless scroungers The fact was many of these people have no savings and no experience of living month to month, debt and eviction was inevitable. To cap it all, many local authorities have banned begging and move on rough sleepers. If there were real government statistics on suicides they would have to act, as it is, they ignore the scandal and too many people see beggers as a problem rather than a scandal.

  3. Read a report by Freud for the DWP (2016) and he makes one of the most ideological statements in years, he says we need to address those on welfare and “the dependency culture” but perhaps the real dependency culture is that of the rich and powerful, they are totally dependent on billions of working people turning up for work on Monday!
    Our working class welfare state is under attack whilst via the upper class welfare state the rich and better off are subsidised to the hilt, for example Big Business Corporations get £79b a year in tax reliefs and subsidies which is the equivalent to £3,500 per hourehold!
    These two opportunist political imbeciles have nothing to say and are irrelevant.
    Decent welfare for working people.

  4. ‘The bold frank’

    I like it 🙂 (proverbial) hat doffed to Dave Kelly & co of the FSF for denying them and putting things as they are.

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